Here we are just a day before the 49th edition of the annual Super Bowl contest. Super Bowl XLIX comes to us from Arizona with kickoff time at 6:35 PM ET this Sunday, February 1, 2015. The reigning champion Seattle Seahawks take on the New England Patriots, who are looking for their fourth Super Bowl in six tries. The latest betting odds favor the Patriots at -1 with the total at 47 ½ and -115 on ML.
Hard to believe but it was only some 5 months ago, when the NFL season began for 2014, and at that time many fans a critics expected that this might be the match-up. But the journey and season has been somewhat difficult for both the Seahawks and Patriots. New England started their season at 2-2 while Seattle was 3-3, but since then the Seahawks won 8 straight games, as the Patriots won 5 of their last 6 games and their loss was in their final season ending game losing to the Bills, when the game meant little.
Now the two teams come together to take a shot at making history. The Seahawks history treat would be back to back Super Bowl Titles and the last to do that was the Patriots some 10 years in the past. Then the Patriots treat would to become only the 6th team to win 4 Super Bowl Titles. The other teams to accomplish that feat were the 49ers, Steelers, Cowboys, Giants and Packers.
So taking a look at how they made it here, and how they compare for this Super Bowl XLIX follows:
The last time the Patriots and the Seahawks played, Seattle won the game 24-23, and that was a game where Patriots QB Brady passed some 58 times. It would be a surprise to see the Patriots pass the ball 58 times I this game. In that game the Pats has 85 plays on offense and the Hawks had 55. Seattle's defense and pass rush can wreck havoc with the Patriots passing game so we can expect New England to get their running game and short passing game going in this Bowl game.
The difference in the games of Seattle's QB Wilson in his first two seasons as compared to his 3rd season are: First he has developed a knowledge, and knack of deciding when to, and when not to run with the ball. Secondly, is his expanding awareness of what the defenses are showing, and what they want to do with him? You will notice that occasionally he will check of for a better play selection that is determined by his knowledge of the opponent's defensive alignment in the game.
How can the Patriots defense shut down Seattle's offense? The obvious is for them to key on Seattle's RB Lynch because in 3 of the 4 games the Seahawks lost in 2014, RB Lynch was limited to 61 yards per game. Thus, if the Patriots can stop Lynch, their chances of winning are improved dramatically. But, that does not say that the Patriots can forget about Seattle's QB Wilson as he has become a master at deceiving the opponent's defenses, by appearing as he running a pass play, and instead he takes off running the ball, and will throw on the run if necessary, and he's been extremely accurate in doing that.